Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Biology


Life Sciences

First Advisor

Mrinal Bhattacharjee

Committee Chair and Members

Mrinal Bhattacharjee, Chair

Joseph Morin

Fatma Abo


Commiphora molmol (myrrha) is widely used as a traditional medicine around the globe against inflammatory diseases. It is also considered to be effective as anti-fungal, anti-cancer and anti-oxidant agent. The minimum inhibitory concentration, bactericidal activity and heat stability of antibiotic component in myrrha oil extract has been investigated. The MIC was determined in nutrient free buffer and in nutrient rich peptone glucose buffer. The results showed that MIC was 0.6% in nutrient free buffer as no growth was shown by cells, whereas, in peptone glucose media a slight increase in cell count was seen. It can be concluded that it has strong antimicrobial activity on yeast in nutrient free medium as the oil is unable to show antibacterial activity on growing cells. Bactericidal activity of the oil was tested with yeast on both nutrient free phosphate buffer and nutrient rich media. After 15 minutes, 0.6% myrrha has reduced the cell viability by 99% in nutrient free phosphate buffer showing that it specifically kills the non-growing yeast cells compared to growing ones. Heat stability was tested and reported that oil is stable on heating up to 70°C for 90 minutes. Furthermore, the pre-incubation of yeast with myrrha oil extract was studied and results revealed that if pre-incubation take place in nutrient rich medium then there is no effect on viability of cells. Therefore, it can be determined that presence or absence of nutrients is effecting the cell viability. In conclusion, the results of the following study suggest that extract of myrrha can be used as an anti-fungal drug.